Darius T. Williford

Darius T. Williford

Darius T. Williford, age 41, went home to be with the Lord on April 16, 2023.

Darius Tremaine Williford was born in Cleveland, OH on January 1, 1982, to Ralph and Janet Williford. Darius was named Mr. New Year 1982. He and his mom were featured on the local news and in the Cleveland Plain Dealer for being the first baby born in Cleveland that year. Janet was later remarried to James Polk on October 26, 1982, and for Darius’ entire life, James assumed the role of his father.

Darius attended the Cleveland Heights – University Heights school district. His mom taught him how to read prior to attending kindergarten and Darius was categorized as a gifted student. He was a very curious student and had a high aptitude for learning new things at a fast pace. Darius was active in extracurricular activities during his school years. He was a member of the Talley Tigers Football League, Cleveland Heights Travel Basketball team, Roxboro Rockets Basketball and Track teams and held lead roles in school plays. Darius received his General Education Diploma (GED).

Darius accepted Christ as his Lord and personal Savior and was baptized at a young age.  Darius spent his childhood learning and growing in his faith at Grace Fundamental Baptist Church. Darius served on several ministries including door-to-door evangelism, Grace Kids choir and was a member of the church’s basketball team. Throughout his life, Darius’ Christian faith and upbringing remained instilled in his spirit. While Darius’ personal choices led him into a hard life, including incarceration, he continued to spread the Gospel to many people who crossed his path.

Darius was employed at the age of fifteen at the Cleveland Heights Chore Program, assisting seniors with their household and outdoor tasks. Darius worked at Geraci’s Italian restaurant for several years.

Darius was a very adventurous and active individual. He enjoyed and was good at basketball, bowling, fishing, dancing, rapping, doing magic tricks, playing video games, swimming, and cycling. Darius also had a love for animals, insects, and nature. Darius loved to cook, and he made the best pancakes. Of all of Darius’ hobbies and interests, he was extremely gifted in basketball and was known to some as “a childhood basketball legend”.

Darius had an infectious personality and no one he met was a stranger. He loved connecting with people and making them laugh. Darius was hilarious and brought a light-hearted sense of joy to others. Darius truly loved his family, and his family loved him. Although his life turned in a different direction, he made it a priority to keep in touch with his family.

Darius leaves to celebrate his life and cherish his loving memory; his parents, James and Janet Polk (Cleveland Heights, OH), brother, Devin Whitmore (Cleveland, OH), sister, Diarra Polk (The Colony, TX). He is also survived by his nephew, aunts, uncles, cousins, and many friends who love him deeply. Darius’ father, Ralph Williford preceded him in death.

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